Top 4 Private Antenatal Classes West London
I remember when I was pregnant with my daughter, and Google suddenly became my best friend. I wanted to make sure that I made all the best decisions for her – from what I ate, to which car seat we bought, to which hospital I gave birth at. The whole world of having a baby and becoming a mum was new to me, and I wanted to get it right.
If you’re expecting your first baby then I’m sure you’re no different. You’ll want to make sure that you make all the right choices for your baby and your family -including which antenatal class you attend.
When I was pregnant I just signed up to the NCT course because that’s what all my friends had done. As I’ve been chatting with the new parents I work with recently though, I’ve noticed that there are many more options when it comes to antenatal classes, with lots of other providers offering their own courses.
In this article I’ll compare the top 4 private antenatal classes in West London:
- Bump to Baby Club
- The Bump Class
- Zenbirth West London
I hope that it helps you to make an informed decision about which West London antenatal class is best for you.
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How I’ll Compare The Antenatal Classes
The aim of this article is to provide you with unbiased information about the top 4 antenatal classes in West London, so it may be helpful to explain my process.
The ‘top 4’ classes that I’ve reviewed are the 4 antenatal classes that rank highest on a Google search for ‘antenatal classes West London.’ This doesn’t include paid-for Google Ads.
I’m not affiliated with any of the classes in any way, and have no interest in promoting one over the other.
To keep things consistent I’ll be reviewing each class based on the following factors:
- Group Size
- Who Teaches The Course
- What The Course Covers
Bump and Baby Club
Bump and Baby Club run antenatal classes all over London, and if you’re based in West London the closest classes would be in Notting Hill, Richmond, Twickenham or Fulham.
They also run hypnobirthing classes, and if you sign up to the antenatal classes you receive a discount code which will give you a saving on hypnobirthing classes.
Here are the key facts about Bump and Baby Club antenatal classes:
- Depending on which location you choose, the classes either run over two weekend days or over five 2-hour long evening sessions. Each course also has a pre-planned ‘girls tea’ for the mums and partners who will be off in the early months post-baby to get to know each other, and a date for a reunion once your babies are a few weeks old.
- You can expect there to be up to 10 couples on each course, and your due dates will be roughly within 4 weeks of each other.
- The courses are led by antenatal teachers who are either midwives, or have qualified as antenatal teachers with NCT
- The course covers labour, birth, the early days of parenthood, practical tips, how to care for a newborn and baby first aid.
- At the time of writing the course cost £250
The Bump Class
The Bump Class is an 8 week antenatal course founded by Marina Fogle and her sister Dr Chiara Hunt, who is a GP.
The courses run in private homes in Parsons Green or South Kensington. Here are the key facts about The Bump Club antenatal course:
- The classes run over eight 2-hour sessions. The first four are held on weekday evenings, and the last four on weekday mornings.
- The classes are for women only, and you can expect there to be up to 12 participants in the group. There is the option for partners to attend a Father’s evening if you are attending the 8 week course.
- Each course is led by a mother, supported by a specific healthcare professional in each class, including doctors, midwives, breastfeeding specialists, osteopaths and physiotherapists.
- The course covers: looking after yourself during your pregnancy, the importance of being prepared, early labour and use of natural techniques as pain relief, active labour and the birth of your child, when labour is not straightforward, your hospital stay and post-natal care, feeding your baby, and looking ahead.
- First aid courses are offered separately.
- At the time of writing the course was priced ‘from £470’ which includes a copy of the book ‘Bump Class; An Expert Guide to Pregnancy, Birth and Beyond’
Zenbirth West London
The Zenbirth course is “an antenatal hypnobirthing course that offers complete antenatal and birth preparation.”
The course is run from the Children’s Wellness Centre in Chiswick, W4 and runs over a weekend. Here are the key facts about the Zenbirth course:
- The course runs over 2 consecutive weekend days. There’s also the option to book a private course, or semi-private course with some friends at your home.
- According to the Zenbirth website there are usually 2-7 couples on each course, and most couples start the course when they are between 26-33 weeks.
- The courses are run by one of 3 named course leaders. You’ll see who’s running your course when you book.
- The course includes: the Zenbirth antenatal hypnobirthing programme, a copy of the Hypnobirthing Book by Katharine Graves, relaxation and hypnobirthing audio, a course manual, and help with any questions you have about pregnancy, labour, birth and breastfeeding.
- At the time of writing the price is £295 for you and your birthing partner to attend the group course.
NCT offer two different types of antenatal class, and have branches all over West London, including Chiswick and Hammersmith, Richmond, Putney and Fulham, Kensington and Ealing.
Here are the key facts about NCT antenatal classes:
- The shorter antenatal class offered by NCT is the ‘NCT Essentials’ course. This runs for 12 hours, spread over evenings or weekends and covers: development of your unborn baby, changes for you and your partner, your health and wellbeing, giving birth, breastfeeding, caring for your baby and support services.
- The longer course is called the ‘NCT Signature course.’ The length of this course seems to vary depending on how the time is divided across evenings and / or weekends. Whilst I was researching I saw courses available to book that lasted between 15.75 hours long and 21 hours long. The course covers: Pregnancy, birth choices and options available, body awareness, relaxation, breathing and massage, what happens in labour, the role of your partner and how your baby is born, pain relief - natural and medical methods, more complex pregnancies and medical procedures, including caesarean birth, and early parenting, feeding your baby and lifestyle changes.
- Unfortunately it’s not possible to find a price for each course on the website. The website explains that the course price varies depending on where you attend the course, the length of the course and the type of the course. NCT also offer reduced prices to those with a low income or who receive certain benefits. You can read more about NCT course pricing here: https://www.nct.org.uk/courses-workshops/course-details-and-prices/course-prices
Over to you
Going to antenatal classes was a really positive experience for me and my husband. We hadn't realised how much we didn't know about birth and looking after a new baby. We also made some lovely friends, and being able to share my experience of having a new baby with other women who were going through exactly the same thing was such a great support.
Preparing for the arrival of your baby is an all-consuming journey, and we all have our own preferences about how we would like to approach it. What I found really encouraging as I researched these classes is the variety of different options available.Whether you decide that you'd like a hypnobirthing-based antenatal class, one that's just for women, a weekend or an evening course, there's something to suit you.
I hope that this article has helped you to decide on which the best class is for you.
I'd love to hear which of these private antenatal classes you've decided to try. Or, perhaps you've been to an antenatal class in West London that wasn't on this list. If so I'd love to hear your experiences. You can let me know in the comments below.